Miniature Book News #104: 2000 March Page: 7
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DREAM BOOKS FROM
A SERIOUS MINIATURE
by Robert E. Massmann
(continuedfrom last MBN issue No. 103)
23. Le Petit La Fontaine. This book
was my reason for seeking the
acquaintance of E. Helene Sherman.
Archie St. Onge gave me the sheets,
after he and Margaret went on the
maiden voyage of the QEII. He obtained
the sheets in Paris, but didn't have
an extra copy of the illustrations,
so he provided photocopies of those.
Robert Henderson had shown me the
magnificent book which he had
commissioned Helene to do as a tribute
to his father-in-law, a former governor
of Massachusetts. He put me in touch
with her, and she undertook this for
me. She colored those illustrations
by hand, and put borders around them;
made a fabulous illuminated title page,
and a stiff, heavy vellum illuminated
wrapper, which became the cover
when I had it bound.
This gem is enough to make a stoic
weep. I also have a copy in the original
marbled wrappers, and two reprints
in hard bindings, but I'll let you guess
which one I'd keep if I had to make
24. Adlai Ewing Stevenson, February
5, 1900, July 14, 1965. Morocco, gilt,
a.e.g. Mr. Stevenson's sister had 250
of these little gems printed at R.R.
Donnelley & Sons Company, in Chicago,
for private keepsakes. The book contains
tributes by President Lyndon Johnson,
Secretary General U Thant of the
U.N., and Governor Otto Kerner of
This is a rare bird. Ruth told me she
couldn't find a copy. I find it irresistible.
25. Fore-edge painting of a cathedral
scene, on a book, 13/16" X 3/4". The
book is blank, bound in fine leather,
with marbled endleaves. It is laid
on a felt pad, on a beveled wooden
base, and held open, tied down by
a triple strand of heavy thread. The
tiniest fore-edge I have seen; Haddon
Klingberg picked it up in England at
about the time I turned down its twin,
in a rare book shop in New York.
26. Ritchie, Ward, Landacre & Quince.
Cloth boards, with specially molded
spine, and exquisite printed pictorial
cover label. Ward Ritchie printeG
50 copies for Dawson's Book Shop,
and Glen thrilled me with this copy
as a gift, at an M.B.S. conclave.
The beauty of this gem, and Glen's
thoughtful generosity combine to make
it a special treasure for me.
27. Mason, William, The Believer's
Pocket Companion. London, James
This little book is dressed in an as-new
leather wallet binding, gilt a.e.g.
It was beautifully printed, by T.C.
Johns. It contains a lovely fore-edge
painting of the City of York. We
attended a very nice eventide service
there, in York Minster Cathedral;
and this serves to bring it back vividly.
28. Officium Beatae Mariae Virginis.
Venetiis, Typographia Balleoniana,
The curious thing about this book (page
size 3" X 2") is that I found it in
beautiful shape, all edges gilt, nicely
sewn, but without endleaves or binding.
I finally decided it needed to be properly
clothed, and recently sent it to Mariana
Blau. She bound it, with marbled
endleaves, in a rich maroon morocco,
gilt; and it is one of those things that
is so beautiful it is difficult to put
down. I liked it before - I love it now.
29. The Queen's Message Broadcast
on Coronation Day, 2 June 1953,
Introduced by the Rt. Honourable
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Edison, Julian I. Miniature Book News #104: 2000 March, periodical, 2000; St. Louis, Missouri. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc9394/m1/7/: accessed July 26, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Rare Book and Texana Collections.